• Our values define our life: our choices, our actions, our behaviours. Our values and beliefs determine the life we decide to conduct, the people we surround ourselves with, and the environment we create - at home and in the office.

    As adults we spend most of our waking time at work, so making sure your job is aligned with your values and vice versa is fundamental for your well-being and happiness. More than that, when you listen to your values, work-life balance isn’t such a mysterious creature after all!

    Let’s look how your values impact your working life and workplace behaviours.

  • 1. Positive Energy!

    Ever found yourself tired and restless in the office? Or caught yourself thinking “Can’t wait to get home and leave this wretched day behind”? Listen carefully to your body - it represents your unconscious mind. When our values are supported by our work life, we feel full of energy. So, it's important to be clear on what your values truly are and if your job or business matches up. If they’re too far away, re-adjust, re-tune and re-discover your genuine mission. Look out for my article ‘Put Your Values into Action’ later this month to follow my 3-step process to happiness. Small steps make a big change! Feeling like you’re not providing enough balanced space for your personal life? Most likely you don’t need to change job, rather set some boundaries and learn how to say no!

    2. Relationships

    Relationships of any nature are a sweet dance between different sets of values. In your office you may find: the Chatty Colleague, the Sarcastic Boss, and so on. It can be easy to use our values as an excuse to let tensions and conflict rise, recognising, ”I don’t like their working style.” However, my advice is try not to focus on differences, rather concentrate on common ground. When we are considerate and respectful we receive the same. Take responsibility for your decisions and stand up for your values but also be open to discussion. Being flexible doesn’t make you weaker or a sell-out. In fact, mental flexibility and empathy are fundamental to any aspect of life. Being around people that share similar views and values may be easier but also slows our personal growth. Try to learn as much as you can from each person with whom you don’t instantly gel. You may be surprised how many of the good ideas aren’t always your ideas. And finally, don’t take it personally, when somebody doesn’t share your point of view it’s not a personal attack, they’re just being themselves!

  • 3. Decision Making

    Effective decision making shouldn’t be based on circumstantial situations or accident. A deep understanding of our values helps us make decisions and plan ahead in almost any circumstance. Imagine you have to work in a team with one of your more passive colleagues who doesn’t seem to bring much to the table. If your core values include productivity and professionalism, don’t let your colleague’s apparent ineffectiveness get in your way. Either motivate him/her to greater action or reconsider their role in the team. Being clear on your values reduces stress levels, since decisions are easier to make among the infinite possibilities.

    4. Leadership

    Your values also determine your leadership style. Whether you’re running a small team of people or a huge division of an international corporate, values influence leaders in two ways: they are the filter that forms our judgements and actions and they are the underlying kick start for our motivation to generate value in the organisation.

    In a study of over 150 managers and owners, Lichtenstein, 2005, demonstrated how values have a direct and significant impact on leadership, while age, occupation, functional experience, and level of education do not.

    Leaders have great responsibility: inspiring and motivating the different teams they’re working with and creating tangible value for shareholders. Your strategy is defined by both the company’s goals and your values, so make sure you are all clear and ready to lead the ship!

  • 5. Career Change

    Feeling suffocated and overwhelmed on your way to work? If your values are completely out of tune with your current job or business perhaps it’s time to explore a career change! If you’re tuned in to Climate Change but work for an oil company, maybe you should look around? As any millennial will tell you, our work does way more than paying our bills! Ask yourself the right questions and be honest with yourself - you’ll be better able to explore the perfect solutions to stay true to your values and make your work count. Remember that company values should be shared by employees, collaborators and other stakeholders. There’s little point forcing a communion of ideas if you stand too far away from each other.

    Need some clarity on your values and your career path? Drop me a line and let’s tailor your values on your perfect job!

    Have a fantastic day in your values driven workplace!